Mario Hoops 3-on-3

Game review by
Andrew Bub, Common Sense Media
Mario Hoops 3-on-3 Game Poster Image
Popular with kids
Mario delivers another innovative sports title.

Parents say

age 6+
Based on 2 reviews

Kids say

age 6+
Based on 15 reviews

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Positive Messages

Promotes competition, sportsmanship, and using your characters as a team.

Violence & Scariness

Characters karate chop to steal the ball, some power-ups involve fire or explosions.


What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Mario and the gang tend to cartoon-up sports titles, making them fun for fans of the sport and people who've never played a sports game before. This game is colorful and challenging and using the stylus will only make kids feel more involved with the game, and more responsible for the results (win or lose) than games using standard control schemes. This game teaches the importance of teamwork.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byWilliam Afton v... October 31, 2020
i love this
Parent of a 10 and 11-year-old Written bymaddox121 March 31, 2016

My childhood, 2010.

Ahh, memories playing it on my dsi, Maddox121 sigining out!
Kid, 11 years old August 16, 2016

Childhood Alert! Buy it!

You should buy it, it is good, there is power-ups that cause light Mickey Mouse like violence, If you're kid can't handle the language in the NBA vide... Continue reading
Kid, 10 years old November 27, 2010

the game isnt too bad

There is a little violence

What's it about?

MARIO HOOPS 3-ON-3 is a real step forward for the new Nintendo DS system. It uses both screens: The upper one shows the action and the lower touch screen gives an overhead, icon-based view. Each basket scored is worth 20 points, but there are hidden coins all over the court and you can net extra coins on a good slam dunk. This means some baskets can be worth over 125 points, if you've taken the time to collect the coins.

Controlling the players means using the direction pad to move and the stylus for everything else. Tap the screen to dribble away from grabby opponents. Dribbling onto randomly appearing pads will net you coins, while if the defense can run over a pad, it gains a handy turtle shell or other goody that can be used to disrupt the offense and steal the ball. Shooting means rubbing the screen upward with the stylus. Rub it up for a lay-up, up and around for a dunk, swipe it toward a player for a pass.

Is it any good?

Most of the time the stylus-play works effectively, but occasionally players will stroke with the stylus, trying to pass, and find themselves shooting instead. It isn't perfect, and there's a bit of a learning curve, but the result is surprisingly fun and innovative. The full 3D graphics are colorful and impressive, and the presentation is whimsical -- there are ice courts, and one even takes place in a volcano. Tournament play is available, as well as plenty of creative Mini games based on basketball.

Wi-Fi is available for multiplayer action, and that's where the game really shines. Taking it to another player, in a game like this where skill matters, is multiplayer nirvana on the basketball court. Mario Hoops 3-on-3 is a terrific take on the sport of basketball, and it will appeal to fans of the game as well as kids and parents who've never had the pleasure of lacing up the high tops to take the ball to the hoop.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about basketball! The game doesn't teach basketball fundamentals, but reflects the joy of the game with honest enthusiasm. Families can also discuss how different characters bring different skills to the game and about team play in general.

Game details

  • Platforms: Nintendo DS
  • Price: $29.99
  • Available online? Available online
  • Developer: Nintendo
  • Release date: November 7, 2006
  • Genre: Sports
  • Topics: Sports and Martial Arts
  • ESRB rating: E for mild cartoon violence
  • Last updated: December 2, 2019

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